Skip to main content

Full text of "The Cambridge Natural History"

See other formats

86                                RANGE   OF   EDENTATES                            CHAP>
differences of any one of them, to either of the two realms which
have just been defined. The two realms that have been discussed
retain their distinctness from each other and from Arctogaea for
a considerable way back into the Tertiary period. It is not until
we reach very early Tertiary times that Edentates are met with
in North America; and then it cannot be regarded as absolutely
settled that the Ganodonta are really the forerunners of the
Armadillos, Sloths, etc. NOT do we find Marsupials in Europe
until far back in time, and at a corresponding period in North
America. Indeed the fauna of South America in late Tertiary
times was even more distinct than it is now; for then we had
confined to that region the Toxodonts, Glyptodonts, Ufacraucfaenia,
and other forms, while in Australia there were still Marsupials.
In late Tertiary times Europe and India were by no means
so distinct from Africa as they are to-day. North America does
not resemble the Old World quite so much as the subdivisions
of the Old World resemble each other; but, as will be pointed
out later, there are and were very substantial agreements. The
Elephants, Rhinoceroses, Giraffe, Hippopotamus, Qrycteropus, are
now distinctively African or Indian animals; but all these
genera, or at least families (in the case of the Giraffe), have
occurred in Europe during quite recent times. Lycaon indeed,
now confined to Africa, is thought to have had a European
origin from its occurrence in caves there. The Hyaena and the
lion, certain members of the Horse tribe, Apes, and other
animals, were also but are not now European.
India again, and the Oriental region generally, once possessed
the Hippopotamus, the Chimpanzee, GirafBdae, the Antelopes,
Cobus, Hippotragus, Strepsiceros, and Qrias> which are now purely
African animals. It shares at present with the Ethiopian region
the Gatarhines, including the Anthropoid Apes, the Lemurs, Tra-
gulina (the genus Dorcatherium is also known frc«a fossils in
India), Manis, Hyaena, the Cheetah, Elephant, Bhinoceros, and the
Batel. There is, in fact, no order of mammals which is now
absent from one of these three regions though present in the
others, save the I^emurs, and they occurred in past times in
Europe. The Tapir of India is known fossil in Europe, and the
latter continent had its Monkeys and even Anthropoids, On the
other hand, North America is more distinct. It has no ^Lemurs,
Apes, Elephants, Rhinoceroses, Tapirs, Old World Edentates (Efifo-